March 31, 2012

For a New Beginning, Some Things Must Change

Winter: a slow freezing, dripping, hiding, melting. Cold air, cold feet. Deer and ice. Coats and hats.
Spring: already here…lavender, lime green, blue sky, birds sing, thick grass.

Last summer, Mark and I went to Petoskey, Michigan, on vacation. We loved it there. It was August and I got to wear a sweatshirt! There was a beach right on the shores of Lake Michigan. Petoskey is located in Little Traverse Bay, on the north edge of the lake, about an hour from the Mackinac Bridge. See location of purple pin (disregard blue dot).

The air was so fresh and, just like their tagline, "Pure Michigan." I could breath there in a way that I find difficult in August in Ohio (or Florida, where I lived for from 1981-1999). So, we returned home, with memories of the beach at Petoskey State Park...

And the lovely flowers, and the comfortable Bay View Inn…

We kidded each other that when we retired we'd move to Petoskey, or Harbor Springs, it's close-by neighbor around the bay. Here is a photo of the marina at Harbor Springs…

Well, one thing led to another, and it was determined moving to a cooler climate by the lake would be very good for me, for us. We figured out a way to do it and made a drive up to Harbor Springs in February to look at houses. We were there during the state junior ski championship and a nice little snowstorm came through, which I didn't mind at all. (I got a good tree photo, after all.)

We found a house we fell in love with (it was one of our top two choices from our internet search). So, we came home, discussed it further and step-by-step the house became our house. We move in nine days!

I started Appalachian Morning creativity blog in July of 2008, the month that we moved to Athens, Ohio, from a Columbus, Ohio suburb. (I'd moved from Sarasota, FL to the Columbus area in 1999, a year after starting my business.) I was so excited to be in Southern Ohio, to be in the foothills of Appalachia, to be near the caves and to have acres of woods… I have loved living here and found it to be the friendliest place I have ever lived. I will miss the friends I've made in the last four years here; but I will be back, often, to visit. We still have ties here and so will look forward to many visits back throughout the year.

Throughout this excitement, I have had some work excitement as well. The two children's books I've worked on have gone to print. One is back and I will share information on it soon. The other will be able to be talked about in May. And, I've been working on wonderful CarolAnn Garratt's third book, Upon Silver Wings III: People and Places around the World

CarolAnn is an "Earthrounder" (times three). She flies her small plane, a Mooney, around the world to raise money for ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) research and to raise awareness. We are just about done with this third book and it is wonderful--wonderful to read about her experiences going to place and meeting people that most readers can only dream about…and imagining what it is like to cross the Pacific ocean by yourself in a small plane… Learn more about Dash for a Cure and CarolAnn at this link.

In case you were wondering… yes, I will still be working from a home office in Harbor Springs. In fact, I will have a bigger office and an art room connected to it and both will look out onto woods, just like I have here. We will be in a very wooded area about five miles from Lake Michigan, high up in the hills above the lake. I will be redoing my website before too long and posting more illustrations. And, of course taking a lot of photos and sharing them with you.

But what should I do about Appalachian Morning creativity blog? Should I keep it as is and just put something about where I live now in the subtitle? Or, should I put it to rest and open a blog under a new name? Can Appalachian Morning be an attitude?


Jessica Bell said...

Of course it can be an attitude. I say keep it. Surely many things in your life have been influenced by that area. And you can always link things you write to memories of living there too, yes?

Dina said...

Yes, of course Appalachian Morning can be an attitude. So surprised by this latest development in your life. To your readers it's all happening very fast. Happy for you that you'll be living in a climate better suited for your health. And the area you're moving to sounds perfectly lovely.

Janice Phelps Williams said...

Thanks, Jessica. I appreciate your input on blog issues as you have one of the best, most followed, writer blogs around!

Thanks, Dina. I know it seems fast, but it is really the end result of a process that started a few years ago; I just haven't talked about it on my blog. I'm excited to have a new place to explore!

Anonymous said...

I actually like the concept of seeing Michigan through the eyes of AA, gives it depth and years of experience. Blogging takes on a rhythm that represents the writer; I'd hate to see you give up a name that represents your rhythm. Yes, keep the name...I love being a new reader!! jink Willis

Anonymous said...

As long as you continue to share your lovely vision of the world, both in pictures and words, you could call it Horse Crap Monthly and it would be ok with me.

There's a part of me that is a little wistful that you are moving away from the area where you spent time with our mutual friend. It makes him feel a little more gone, if that were possible.

But I'm glad for your new adventure and look forward to reading about it and staying in correspondence with you. Mike C.

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